Herpes Simplex of the Eyelids Definition

Acute, usually unilateral eyelid disorder accompanied by skin and mucous membrane vesicles.

Etiology: Infection of the skin of the eyelids results when latent herpes simplex viruses present in the tissue are activated by ultraviolet radiation. The virus spreads along sensory nerve fibers from the trigeminal ganglion to the surface of the skin.

Symptoms: Typical clustered eruptions of painful vesicles filled with serous fluid frequently occur at the junction of mucous membranes and skin (Fig. 2.13). Later the vesicles dry and crusts form. Lesions heal without scarring. The disorder is usually unilateral.

Treatment: Topical use of virostatic agents is indicated. The patient should avoid intense ultraviolet radiation as a prophylactic measure against recurrence.

Prognosis: The prognosis is good, although the disorder frequently recurs.

Fig. 2.13 Painful vesicles filled with serous fluid erupt in clusters at the angle of the eye.

Herpes The Eyelid

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